The mind is an extremely powerful connect-the-dots machine, always making rapid associations between what it notices, triggering any one of millions of memories or projections about the future.
Essentially, the mind is making stories: sequences of events, past or future, where you stand to gain or lose something.
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Its basic idea is to see how quiet the mind can get when you stop feeding it entertainment, conversation, and daydreams.
It provides the environment for noticing what’s happening inside you and around you, and come back to that when you get distracted.
A certain desperation grows around the needs you face in these stories, which creates real stress, usually over nothing. Is it actually useful, or merely addictive, to continually imagine a confrontation with a driver that cut you off on the way to work this morning?
These stories are just a natural by-product of the mind's ability to make connections between similar thoughts, but they generate real stress.
Every time you experience stress, it’s a response to a narrative in the mind, a story about something you feel you need to have happen or prevent from happening.
When you notice stress rising at some random moment, find the story. Just leave the narrative unfinished and go back to what you were doing before the storytelling started.
It is easy to recruit others to take part in giving up sugar. People may ask you a few questions that will lead them to join right alongside you.
There could also be people that will be offended by your choice. A good strategy involves not drawing attention to yourself. For example, suddenly declining sugary food while spending time with friends.
Our lives are infiltrated by noise and distractions.
We let ourselves get distracted by phone rings, notifications, email, etc., which take up most of our day.
Even when there is no distraction, the phone silently sitting next to you is a psychological distraction in itself, as you know that it can disturb you any second.